Trisha Shetty (Editor)

Acts 13

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Book  Acts of the Apostles
Order in the Bible part  5
Bible part  New Testament
Category  Church history
Acts 13

Acts 13 is the thirteenth chapter of the Acts of the Apostles in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. It records the first missionary journey of Paul and Barnabas to Cyprus and Pisidia. The book containing this chapter is anonymous but early Christian tradition uniformly affirmed that Luke composed this book as well as the Gospel of Luke.



The original text is written in Koine Greek and is divided into 52 verses. Some most ancient manuscripts containing this chapter are:

  • Codex Vaticanus (AD 325-350)
  • Codex Sinaiticus (AD 330-360)
  • Codex Bezae (ca. AD 400)
  • Codex Alexandrinus (ca. AD 400-440)
  • Codex Ephraemi Rescriptus (ca. AD 450; extant: verses 2-52)
  • Codex Laudianus (ca. AD 550)
  • Location

    This chapter mentions the following places (in order of appearance):

  • Antioch, Syria
  • Seleucia (Greek: σελευκεια), i.e. Seleucia Pieria, the port serving Antioch
  • Cyprus: Salamis, Paphos
  • Perga, Pamphylia
  • Jerusalem
  • Antioch, Pisidia
  • Iconium, Frygia
  • Timeline

    The first missionary journey of Paul and Barnabas took place about AD 47-48.


    This chapter can be grouped:

  • Acts 13:1-3 = Barnabas and Saul Appointed
  • Acts 13:4-12 = Preaching in Cyprus
  • Acts 13:13-41 = At Antioch in Pisidia
  • Acts 13:42-52 = Blessing and Conflict at Antioch
  • Verse 1

    Now in the church that was at Antioch there were certain prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen who had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.

    This Lucius of Cyrene is thought to be the same person as mentioned in Romans 16:21, or the same as Luke, the writer of the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles.

    Verse 2

    While they were engaged in the worship of the Lord and were fasting, the Holy Spirit said: "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul, for the work to which I have called them."

    Verse 3

    Accordingly, after fasting and prayer, they placed their hands on them and dismissed them.

    Verse 4

    Barnabas and Saul, sent on this mission, as they were, by the Holy Spirit, went down to Seleucia, and from there sailed to Cyprus.

    Verse 5

    On reaching Salamis, they began to tell the message of God in the Jewish synagogues; and they had John with them as an assistant.

    Verse 6

    Now when they had gone through the island[a] to Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew whose name was Bar-Jesus,

    Verse 7

    who was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, an intelligent man. This man called for Barnabas and Saul and sought to hear the word of God.

    Verse 8

    But Elymas the sorcerer (for so his name is translated) withstood them, seeking to turn the proconsul away from the faith.

    Verse 9

    However, Saul (who is the same as Paul), full of the Holy Spirit, fixed his eyes on him

    Verse 10

    and said: 'You incarnation of deceit and all fraud! You son of the devil! You opponent of all that is good! Will you never cease to divert ‘the straight paths of the Lord’?"

    Verse 11

    " 'Listen! The hand of the Lord is on you even now, and you will be blind for a time and unable to see the sun.' Immediately a mist and darkness fell on him, and he went feeling about for someone to guide him."

    Verse 12

    Then the proconsul believed, when he saw what had been done, being astonished at the teaching of the Lord.

    Luke presents Sergius Paulus as the first Gentile ruler to believe the gospel. Unlike Cornelius (Acts 10:2), there is no evidence that Sergius attended the temple or was a God-fearer. This pagan government official was amazed at the power of God and believed the truth.

    Verse 13

    Now when Paul and his party set sail from Paphos, they came to Perga in Pamphylia; and John, departing from them, returned to Jerusalem.

    This John, also mentioned in verse 5, was John Mark, the nephew of Barnabas (Acts 12:25). Whatever the trouble was between Paul and John Mark, it was enough for Paul not to want John Mark to accompany him on a later journey (Acts 15:36-39). John Mark would prove faithful later in Paul's ministry (see 2 Timothy 4:11).

    Verse 14

    The others went on from Perga and arrived at Antioch in Pisidia. There they went into the synagogue on the Sabbath and took their seats.

    Verse 15

    After the reading of the Law and the prophets, the synagogue leader sent them this message — 'Friends, if you have any helpful words to address to the people, now is the time to speak.' "

    Verse 16

    'So Paul rose and, motioning with his hand, said: 'People of Israel and all here who worship God, hear what I have to say.' "

    Verse 17

    'The God of this people Israel chose our ancestors, and during their stay in Egypt increased the prosperity of the people, and then ‘with uplifted arm brought them out from that land.’ "

    Verse 18

    'For about forty years ‘he bore with them in the desert’; then, after destroying seven heathen nations in Canaan, he allotted their land to this people"

    Verse 19

    'after destroying seven heathen nations in Canaan, he allotted their land to this people —"

    Verse 20

    'For about four hundred and fifty years. In later times he gave them Judges, of whom the prophet Samuel was the last."

    Verse 21

    'And, when they demanded a king, God gave them Saul the son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, who reigned for forty years."

    Verse 22

    'After removing him, he raised David to the throne, and bore this testimony to him — ‘In David, the son of Jesse, I have found a man after my own heart, who will carry out all my purposes.’"

    Verse 23

    'It was from this man's descendants that God, in accordance with his promise, gave Israel a Savior — Jesus;"

    Verse 24

    'John having first proclaimed, before the appearance of Jesus, a baptism on repentance for all the people of Israel."

    Verse 25

    'As John was drawing towards the end of his career, he said what do you suppose that I am? I am not the Christ. But there is "one coming" after me, whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.’ "

    Verse 26

    'Brothers and sisters, descendants of Abraham, and all those among you who worship God, it was to us that the message of this salvation was sent."

    Verse 27

    'The people of Jerusalem and their leaders, failing to recognize Jesus, and not understanding the utterances of the prophets that are read every Sabbath, fulfilled them by condemning him."

    Verse 28

    'They found no ground at all for putting him to death, and yet demanded his execution from Pilate;"

    Verse 29

    'and, after carrying out everything written about him, they took Jesus down from the cross, and laid him in a tomb."

    Verse 30

    'But God raised him from the dead;"

    Verse 31

    and he appeared for many days to those who had gone up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, and who are now witnesses for him to the people.

    Verse 32

    "We also have good news to tell you, about the promise made to our ancestors"

    Verse 34

    And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, he said on this wise, I will give you the sure mercies of David.

    Citing Isaiah 55:3


    Acts 13 Wikipedia